By Russell Hope,
Thousands of women who had defective breast implants made by French company Poly Implant Prothese (so-called PIP implants), should receive compensation, a court has said.
In a ruling that could affect tens of thousands of victims from dozens of countries, from Britain to Latin America, the Paris appeal court decided TUV Rheinland was negligent in awarding safety certificates.
Thursday’s ruling was announced in a statement by the French advocacy association PIPA, which represents victims.
The implants, made by the French firm, which shut down in the wake of the scandal in 2010, were certified as safe by the German company.
They were found to be more likely to rupture than other implants, causing inflammation in surrounding tissues and making removing them more complicated, studies found.
Lawyer Olivier Aumaitre, who represented the women, said: “We are delighted with this outcome which definitively puts an end to the doubts about TUV’s responsibility.
“After 10 years of waiting and fierce combat, the German certifier will have to fully compensate the victims.”
A spokesman for TUV Rheinland declined to comment on the judgement, saying the company wanted first to study a translated version first.
When compensation will be awarded and how much has not been decided yet, PIPA (PIP Implant World Victims Association) said.
The organisation is seeking tens of thousands of euros in damages for each victim, it said in a statement, ahead of the first ruling on compensation expected in September.
PIP founder, Jean-Claude Mas, was jailed for four years and fined 75,000 euros (£65,000) in 2013.